The Uganda Medical Association (UMA) has constituted a team of highly trained Medical personnel to support the treatment of all persons that were tortured while under custody following their arrest in Arua district.
The medical association says that 15 of the experts among them are on standby to voluntarily provide treatment to all victims of torture arising out of the infamous arrests. Dr Ekwaro Obuku, the President of Uganda Medical Association (UMA) says the assembled experts were chosen based on descriptions on the condition of the victims.
The specialists include Nephrologists, specifically to treat diseases that affect the kidneys and their ability to function, Gastroenterologists for any condition that could have affected the oesophagus, stomach, small intestine, colon and rectum, pancreas, gallbladder, bile ducts and liver.
Also on standby are Cardiologists, for anything that could have affected the heart and Toxicologists, Trauma Surgeons who will look at severe injuries, Neurosurgeons to look at brain problems and Anesthesiologists, to deal with critical care.
Dr Obuku was speaking at a press conference held in Mulago today. The press conference was organized in response to demands for specialized treatment for two of the legislators that suffered immense bodily harm while under custody.
The injured persons include, among others, Kyaddondo East MP Robert Kyagulanyi Ssentamu and Mityana Municipality MP Francis Zzake. Kyagulanyi is currently held at Makindye military barracks, where he is reported to be in extreme pain and covered in bruises, on the head, face and all over the body. Reports indicate that he suffered internal bleeding and has a damaged kidney.
The other legislator Francis Zaake is admitted in Lubaga Hospital, where he has been in a critical condition over the last three days. Their colleagues, Gerald Karuhanga, Paul Mwiru, MP-elect Kassiano Wadri, former Makindye East MP Micheal Mabikke and over 30 others are detained in Gulu.
Dr Obuku says they have written to the Head of State to ensure that Kyagulanyi can be treated outside the military walls where it is uncertain if those skills exist. He added that they have alerted their colleagues in the diaspora in the event that medical evacuation for further care is warranted.
He says doctors should ensure they treat torture suspects as per their ethics, adding that they should also document issues of torture. The association says it is very unfortunate that torture victims have been denied access to specialized medical care.